Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) co-owner Ness Wadia‘s sentencing in Japan for possessing cannabis has raised questions on whether it will have any impact on the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise. However, Mohit Burman, the majority stakeholder in KXIP, believes that whatever happened two months before the 12th edition of the cash-rich league started shouldn’t have any bearing on the fate of the franchise. Speaking to IANS, Burman said it was Wadia’s personal matter and not something that would affect the IPL franchise or the game of cricket in any way. He went on to add that there was no question of any change in the ownership structure of KXIP.

“Yes, we will reply, but these are two different things. There is no question of discussing the ownership pattern at the moment. What he does in his personal life has nothing to do with Kings XI. It didn’t happen during the course of the IPL and didn’t even happen in this country, so it is his personal problem. “As far as we are concerned, we will obviously reply to the BCCI. But as far as my thinking as a co-owner goes, I feel what a director does in his personal capacity has got nothing to do with the team. What he did two months before the IPL in his personal capacity is of no concern to me or Kings XI,” Burman clarified.

As per the IPL Operational Rules accessed by IANS, Clause 14 of Section 2 of the IPL Operational Rules state that “each person subject to the operational rules shall not, whether during a match or otherwise, act or omit to act in any way which would or might reasonably be anticipated to have an adverse effect on the image and/or reputation of any Team, any Franchisee, any Player, any Team Official, the BCCI, the League and/or the Game or which would otherwise bring any of the foregoing into disrepute.”

It further states that the ombudsman and the commission may suspend a team or franchise from the league if any person representing the team/franchise breaches Clause 14 of Section 2. At present, Burman holds 46 percent stake in KXIP, while Wadia and Preity Zinta hold 23 percent each. Karan Paul has 8 percent stake in the franchise.

A Japanese court on April 30 sentenced Wadia to two years in jail for possession of 25 gm cannabis resin. However, the court suspended the sentence for five years, which means that it won’t be implemented unless he breaks the law again in Japan.